Is It Locally Made?
Local and Beyond
January  2010
Our Winter Storm
Play Day

Join us on
March 13th
for a
winter storm
play day.
Plan for
it now.
 Is Anything Made Locally Anymore?
I am asked this a lot. Or from visitors to our area, 'Do you have anything locally made?'. I guess that the first thing that I have to ask is, 'What do you call local?' In some cases people mean in our neighborhood and in others cases they mean in the United States. I do look for locally made items that fit both cases.

There are times that I find items made in the US but the price is so high that, even though it is a wonderful product, I know that I wouldn't be able to sell it. But I have found a number of wonderful products made in Minnesota and Wisconsin at price points that people will appreciate. I have also found some wonderful products made by small, specialty companies that are found through out the United States.

I would like to highlight some of these products in this newsletter. But remember that when you are getting products from small - often one person - companies, there is a limited supply at any given time. And what you may find one time, you may not find the next time. The small artisan company often is a work in progress. The artisan may tire of making one model or move on to a different model and the products will change. If you find something that you are in love with, get it now because it may not be available again. The small company that makes more than one item may tool up for one item at a time and when they have made a good supply of that item, they will quit making that item, tool up another and make that one for awhile. This means that not everything is always available.

  Locally Made, Char's Stocking Sticks and Straight Sticks
We are really excited to introduce this locally made product, carried exclusively by Playing With Yarn. Char is a long time customer, spinner, shepherdess and knitter. She has been experimenting with making needles for some time and these are a lovely product. The double point sets have a holder system that protects the points and keeps the set together. So far we have sets in the sizes 6 and under. But we will have a larger selection as she is able to make them. The sticks all have different shaped tops. Char is also making drop spindles and we will be carrying more of them as she gets them done.
Char has fleece from her sheep that we will be getting as she shears.

You do really need to see these beautiful needles!

And don't forget that we carry Serendipity Needles from R
I. A different style of needle but very nice. They are made by a small company, family owned. At least four times a year we get a shipment for that season featuring tops designed just for that season. So check them out often.
  Buttons, Beads, Shawl pins And Niddy Noddys!

Two local women made buttons for us as well as some other very special products. From C-Koop we get buttons, beads and shawl pins.

And from Tahtini, at Rainy Day Studios, we get
beaded buttons and niddy noddys. For non spinners, the niddy noddy is used to create a hank of yarn. These KNs are adjustable to different lengths and are very strong. My poor efforts at photography don't do them justice.

  Hand-Dyed Yarns And Patterns

Our long-time friend Kris Franklin started hand-dying yarn a couple of years ago and we have been stocking it. We have carried her patterns for years and are so very happy to have her beautiful yarns. Kris is another lace fanatic and has dyed these beautiful silks for knitting lace. and she has also dyed a line of sock yarn that she calls Hippy Feet. The finished sock is in her color 'Boot Camp'. Since Kris doesn't dye large batches, you need to grab onto what you like when you see it because it may never come again.

  Candles Created In The North Woods

ry so often we find a product that we really love when a customer drops in to show us what they make. These lovely soy candles came to us when the candle maker stopped by to see us. They smell great, have nice packaging and are made just across the state line in WI. Although you can not knit them or knit with them, They make our yarn smell yummy and make us feel good when they are burning.

Lori's Lathers a Duluth Made Soap.
Lori is a dog training friend and some of you may have met her when she has been with us at the MN Knitter's Guild YarnOver, The Duluth Women's Expo or at one of our Open Houses. Lori always makes sure that we have a supply of her soaps.

We really do feel honored to be able to carry locally made products like these.

Drop Spindles from MN and KY

I mentioned earlier that Char is making drop spindles for us but we also have some with a vary different style. The above photo shows both styles Chars and those from Uwe's. Besides drop spindles Uwe makes Viking and English combs. Carolyn and I have given both styles a whirl and are really happy with both types.
P.S. If you want to see a sample of Uwe's English Combs, I just got a set of 5 pitch for myself in walnut - oh, so yummy.

The Oregon Wood Worker's Swift
This is a very nice swift for a number of reasons, it is
very sturdy and adjusts to many sizes. It comes in a nice carrying case. It is also made in the U.S. It is also visible in the photo of the drop spindles.

Bath Bags Made In ID
These lovely little muslin bags hold soap chips. The soap company that makes these uses the trimmings from their handmade soap for these bags that can be used as your soap and wash cloth all at once or as a fragrant sachet. They are wonderful for you own use or as a gift. 
Upcoming Event - Our Winter Play Day
Join us for a storm day celebration without a storm day. Bring you projects, some munchies to share. Come when you can, stay as long as you can!
March 13, 2010 from 10 to 7
If there is a real storm the storm play day reschedule day is March 20th
276 Scenic Drive
Knife River, Minnesota 55609
 And so on.......
We're on Face Book now. Playing with Yarn in Knife River, MN. One of our customers told me that she started a page on Face Book to see photos of her grandchildren. So I decided to give it a try, and she was right there were pictures of my grandchildren that I had never seen.

Now I have added a page for the shop. I have put up the information on our new Outreach project - the itty bitty babies project. If you are not on Face Book, the information is on our web page but there is a discussion page on Face Book and people can add pictures of their projects. I am not sure how I feel with all of this computer networking. It is where my age starts to show.

I am off to Portland, OR for the Clicker Training Expo Thursday. Bo and the Yorkie girls will be manning the shop. I will not be taking Emma this year. Delta wants $350 for her to fly with me, under the seat and she would be my carry on luggage. So I am going alone. I'll be back on The 1st. Carolyn will be teaching classes and be here for open knitting while I am gone. I am so excited as I will be taking classes from Kay Laurence from England.

Stay warm, keep the needles clicking and the hooks bobbing.
Unraveling yours,

Judy, Bo and the Yorkie girls, Emma, Lilly, Winnie and Jossie

Contact Info
Playing With Yarn
Judy Casserberg
877-693-2221    218 834 5967
P.O. Box 5, Knife River, MN 55609